SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF.--The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors unanimously created a Task Force charged with focusing on solutions to the immediate housing needs of the more than 7,000 homeless families and individuals across Santa Clara County.
The action was taken at the Board meeting on Tuesday, February 24, in the Board Chambers at the County Government Center, 70 West Hedding Street.
Co-Chaired by Matthew Mahood, President and CEO of the San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce, and Ben Field, Executive Officer of the South Bay Labor Council, the Housing Task Force will include Supervisors Mike Wasserman and Cindy Chavez, a representative from the City of San Jose chosen by the Mayor, a member of the Cities Association of Santa Clara County, a member of a State Legislative delegation, a representative of the Santa Clara County Housing Authority, a representative of the Housing Trust Silicon Valley and a representative from the Santa Clara Valley Water District.
But just as important, the Task Force will reach out to people who are homeless or have been homeless, service providers who care for the homeless and other stakeholders so they can contribute their expertise and experience to the Task Force mission during the 10-month process.
“We have to include the entire community in helping us find new ways and resources to house people who have been forced to sleep in tents near creeks or on the streets,” said President Dave Cortese, who proposed the Task Force in his State of the County address in January. “We also need to accelerate services to segments of the homeless population who have specific needs.”
The Housing Task Force will give identify the area’s most critical needs and feasible solutions that can be launched in the short term, with particular attention to homeless military veterans, children and foster youth. The members will be guided by the Community Plan to End Homelessness, which was recently approved by the Board of Supervisors.
The Task Force will meet monthly, with a report due to the Board of Supervisors by December 31, 2015.
On any given night in Santa Clara County, there are 7,600 people who are County, including 718 U.S. military veterans. From December 1 through March 31, there are about 1,750 shelter beds available for homeless in Santa Clara County. That number drops to about 1,475 the rest of the year.
Click here to read the report on the Housing Task Force.
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Media Contact: Janice Rombeck, Office of Supervisor Dave Cortese, 408-299-5030 (office) 408-803-2095 (cell)
Posted: February 26, 2015